Professor Davis’ research explores the relationship between work and well-being as a universal human experience.  An interdisciplinary labor economist and public health scientist by training, Dr. Davis studies a wide range of occupational groups, from fishers in coastal Maine to sweatshop workers in Vietnam and beyond.  In a recent study funded by the US Department of Labor, she examined whether gig economy workers suffer worse health outcomes than hourly paid employees.  These findings shed light on the inequality of health outcomes for low-income, minority, and female workers, both domestic and international.  Dr. Davis was honored by the American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine with the award for best publication in 2021 for her work on the health effects of night and irregular shifts.  Her first book entitled Jobs, Health, and the Meaning of Work (MIT Press, 2024) will be released this August.  Her most recent work focuses on the labor market and work experience of nurses, using an anthropological approach to explore the challenges and opportunities for the profession and the US healthcare system more broadly.

Professor Davis received degrees in Economics from the University of Miami (BA) and the University of Florida (MS/PhD).  She recently completed an associate’s degree in nursing from Bunker Hill Community College (ADN).  She has held research appointments at the Harvard School of Public Health, University of Maine, University of Massachusetts Boston, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution and Boston University.  Professor Davis teaches a range of urban planning and policy courses at Tufts, including economics, public health, built environment, and statistics, and is known for her innovative teaching practices engaging poetry as a teaching and learning tool.  She served as department chair from 2016 to 2021 and again from 2023 to 2024.

Curriculum Vitae